A Year-Round Guide to Franklin and Nantahala

Cool down with a glass of lemonade One of the best — and tastiest — ways to escape the heat and humidity of a North Carolina summer is with a

Madison County Championship Rodeo

Cool down with a glass of lemonade One of the best — and tastiest — ways to escape the heat and humidity of a North Carolina summer is with a

Rosemary and Goat Cheese Strata

Cool down with a glass of lemonade One of the best — and tastiest — ways to escape the heat and humidity of a North Carolina summer is with a

Cool down with a glass of lemonade

One of the best — and tastiest — ways to escape the heat and humidity of a North Carolina summer is with a tall glass of lemonade. Lentz Ison, beverage director of Dram & Draught, created two spins on this classic drink that you can make (soft or hard) at home or order from one of their locations this month. Cheers!

Dram & Draught Cocktail Bar
dramanddraught.com

1 Glenwood Avenue, Suite 101
Raleigh, NC 27603

300 West Gate City Boulevard
Greensboro, NC 27406

The Chesterfield Building
701 West Main Street
Durham, NC 27701
(coming in July)

Peach Jam & Basil Lemonade

Recipe by Lentz Ison
Yield: 1 drink.

2 ounces freshly squeezed lemon juice
1½ ounces simple syrup
1 teaspoon peach jam
4 basil leaves (optional)

Make it hard:

2 ounces bourbon (Lentz likes CB Fisher’s Bottled in Bond Bourbon)
1 ounce freshly squeezed lemon juice
¾ ounce simple syrup
1 tablespoon peach jam
4 basil leaves (optional)

For the simple syrup: Bring 1 cup of water to a boil. Remove from heat and add 1 cup of sugar. Stir until sugar has dissolved.

For the drink: Combine bourbon (if using), fresh lemon juice, simple syrup, peach jam, and basil leaves in a shaker tin (or a Mason jar with the lid closed). Add ice. Shake ingredients vigorously. Strain out ice and basil. Serve in glass with ice. Garnish with a basil leaf and peach slices (if desired).
 

[Related: Craving more lemonade recipes? Check these out!]

 

My Lady Grey Lemonade

Recipe by Lentz Ison
Yield: 1 drink.

2 ounces Earl Grey tea syrup (Lentz likes Greensboro-based BitterWitch Brews’ blend of Earl Grey tea)
2 ounces freshly squeezed lemon juice
Soda water

Make it hard:

2 ounces vodka (Lentz likes Cathead Honeysuckle Vodka)
1 ounce BitterWitch Earl Grey tea syrup
1 ounce freshly squeezed lemon juice
Soda water

For the Earl Grey syrup: Steep Earl Grey tea bag in 1 cup of hot water per package directions. Add 1 cup of sugar. Stir until sugar has dissolved.

For the drink: Combine vodka (if using), Earl Grey syrup, and fresh lemon juice in a shaker tin (or a Mason jar with the lid closed). Add ice. Shake ingredients vigorously. Pour into a glass, top with soda water as desired, and enjoy. Garnish with a dried lemon slice and flower petals (if desired).


Dion Heckman says making one Seni Side bag requires about 24 hours of drying, curing, and craftsmanship. photograph by Anna Routh Barzin

Shop for a beach bag

Dion Heckman. photograph by Anna Routh Barzin

Dion Heckman’s attic in Raleigh looks more like a warehouse full of beach bags than a space to store Christmas decorations. Some bags hang from racks while others are stacked on the floor. The large tan ones are made out of the braided, dried leaves of a pandan plant — a species found in Indonesia and other tropical islands — while the small, round purses are made of ata and rattan vines. Born and raised in Indonesia, Heckman got to know many local artists before moving to America and eventually to the Triangle area in 2010. Heckman founded Seni Side, a sustainable fashion brand, in 2013. The business sells accessories created by eight artisans who live on the Indonesian Islands of Bali and Lombok. Now, the bags travel around the world to supply North Carolina beachgoers with the perfect summer accessory. — Rylee Parsons

Seni Side
(919) 808-5562, seniside.com


Sign up for bear photography class with Mark Buckler (who took this shot) at the Black Bear Festival. photograph by Mark Buckler

Learn about black bears

Coastal North Carolina is characterized by flatlands, beaches, and longleaf pine trees. It’s also (maybe surprisingly) home to the largest black bears in the world. During the North Carolina Black Bear Festival, celebrate these creatures with a variety of educational and fun activities, like the wild bear tours. The evening will end with a grand finale known as “Reflections on the Roanoke” — a choreographed fireworks show with laser lights and animation in downtown Plymouth, right near the Roanoke River waterfront.

North Carolina Black Bear Festival — Plymouth, June 5
(252) 793-6627, ncbearfest.com

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This story was published on May 25, 2021

Our State Staff

Since 1933, Our State has shared stories about North Carolina with readers both in state and around the world. We celebrate the people and places that make this state great. From the mountains to the coast, we feature North Carolina travel, history, food, and beautiful scenic photography.